Welcome to National Hispanic Heritage Month!


National Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15 and ends on October 15. The anniversary of independence of eight Latin American countries takes place during this month. Costa Rica, blog photoEl Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua celebrate their independence on September 15th. Mexico, Chile, and Belize celebrate their independence on September 16th, 18th and 21st, respectively. Also celebrated is the discovery of America on October 12th by Christopher Columbus. This day is referred to as Día de la Raza in Spanish speaking countries.

This special month provides a great opportunity to share Latin America culture with your children and add some extra insight to the already rich history connected to our children of Hispanic descent. Your state may have special events taking place during this month. The National Hispanic Heritage Month website lists many events and resources that could help your family celebrate national Hispanic Heritage Month.

The more I share with my daughter about different cultures, the more she will realize that it takes respect and kindness to make the world a better place.

I am originally from Ecuador, which is located south of Colombia and north of Peru in South America. It is difficult for me to narrow down the aspects of my Hispanic Heritage that I want to pass on to my daughter. Ecuador is such a diverse country and there is so much to share when it comes to food, traditions, weather, love for nature, art, people. The list could go on and on. Besides doing my best to teach my daughter about the food that I love from Ecuador, telling her over and over again how perfect the weather is in Ecuador, speaking to her in Spanish at home as much as possible, and telling my husband constantly that we should retire in Ecuador; I would want my daughter to know about the diversity, kindness, strength, and resiliency of the Ecuadorian people. I want her to remember stories I tell of when I was a little girl and the local lady who would take her cows to pasture would bring my family milk from her cows and eggs from her chickens and make sure my mother was safe while my father was gone for work. This woman was a Native Ecuadorian Indian, who lived in a field with her animals and slept in a mud hut, but she would come and check on us and made sure we had what we needed. I would want my daughter to realize that no matter where we come from and what our backgrounds are, we all have the ability to be kind and loving. I think the more I share with my daughter about different cultures, not only Hispanic cultures, the more she will realize that it takes respect and kindness to make the world a better place.

I’m sure you all have experiences that you can share with your children that could open their hearts and their minds, and at the same time teach them about other cultures.

Adriana Tebbe is the Latin America Program Coordinator for MLJ Adoptions. With nearly a decade in social work experience, Adriana enjoys watching children from hard places, both domestically and internationally, thrive when they are given the opportunity to develop relationships with adults and families.